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John Quincy Adams
1767 - 1848

Sixth President of the United States (1825-1829). Adams was a Harvard-trained lawyer, at various times a Federalist, Republican, and Whig. He was appointed as U.S. Minister to the Netherlands, then to Russia, and then to Britain, in which roles he served with sufficient distinction to be appointed Secretary of State to James Munroe (1817-1825). In that position he skillfully gained Florida from Spain, and co-steered the Monroe Doctrine with Monroe. Adams became president in a narrow election that was eventually decided in the U.S. House of Representatives, and enjoyed an undistinguished term due to Congressional resistance to his program. After his presidency he was elected a member of Congress and served there for 17 years (1830-1847).

Click here for an essay by John Quincy Adams
Nip the shoots of arbitrary power in the bud, is the only maxim which can ever preserve the liberties of any people.

Feb. 6, 1775 - from "Novanglus" in the Boston Gazette
As the happiness of the people is the sole end of government, so the consent of the people is the only foundation of it.

Posterity - you will never know how much it has cost my generation to preserve your freedom. I hope you will make good use of it.

Facts are stubborn things; and whatever may be our wishes, our inclinations, or the dictates of our passions, they cannot alter the state of facts and evidence.

Always vote for principle, though you may vote alone, and you may cherish the sweetest reflection that your vote is never lost.

When people talk of the freedom of writing, speaking or thinking I cannot choose but laugh. No such thing ever existed. No such thing now exists; but I hope it will exist. But it must be hundreds of years after you and I shall write and speak no more.

Liberty cannot be preserved without a general knowledge among the people, who have... a right, an indisputable, unalienable, indefeasible, divine right to that most dreaded and envied kind of knowledge, I mean the characters and conduct of their rulers.